Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Man recovering from brain surgery’s cries for help ignored

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Tamlyn Boddington and her husband Lee.

Tamlyn Boddington desperately signalled for help for more than 10 minutes as an injured elderly man lay in the rain.

At 9:10 am on Tuesday April 20, Tamlyn was driving along Botany Road by Xtreme Bowling when she spotted an elderly gentleman on the ground, flailing his arms.

There were cars in front of her.

“I thought someone would stop,” Tamlyn says. “They didn’t.”

Acting quickly, she turned into the parking area, jumped out and ran over to the man.

He shook his head and turned to face the wall.

She waved at passing cars urgently as she called an ambulance.

No cars stopped. This went on for 10 minutes.

Tamlyn spotted a big Harvey Norman truck coming up from the lane behind Xtreme.

She signalled to him. Immediately the driver, Jono, stopped his truck and ran over with “no hesitation”.

Together they lifted the man up and placed him in the truck out of the rain.

Later he helped Tamlyn slowly walk him over to Xtreme where he could sit on a chair and then waited with them.

“The man said his name was John,” Tamlyn says. “He couldn’t remember his last name or address.”

As the shock wore off, John managed to get across he has cancer, had brain surgery and was discharged a few days ago.

He travelled to Harvey Norman in an attempt to buy a cell phone. Unfortunately he’d landed on the ground and was unable to get up.

The staff at Xtreme organised food and water for John.

The ambulance took 40 minutes to get there. Jono and Tamlyn left once he was settled in with the paramedics.

Tamlyn says she is appalled by the lack of help from passing cars. “There was no way he wasn’t clearly visible,” she says.

“I have seen first-hand how amazing this community can be but I was shocked at how he was just ignored.”

She mentions that it was a “scary sight, seeing a man rolling and waving his arms, head and bandaged legs in the air” but in those situations “you have to put your personal fear and doubts aside and help”.

Sometimes it is “easier to turn a blind eye” or tell yourself that “someone else will help,” says Tamlyn.

She is grateful Jono stopped to help. “I hope this encourages people to truly see others around them and not to be afraid to help,” she says. “This man was cold and alone and so many people passed by.”

John has recently had brain surgery, been discharged and lives off Millhouse Drive.

“If anyone knows of this lovely man, I have so many offers of help for him,” she says. “I would love to check up on him and show him he isn’t alone.”

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